By Akol Madut Ngong
A female lawmaker at the Transitional National Legislative Assembly said high bride price demanded by parents who marry off their daughters is promoting serious crime in the societies.
Hon. Beatrice Aber Samson stressed that high dowry is to blame for serious crime in the society committed mostly by youth who tend to indulge in cattle raiding in pursuit for cows to pay dowries.
The MP called for the abolition of the cultural norms and traditional practices that put youth on pressure making them to commit crimes.
Beatrice made her submission on the high bride price matter in a sideline exclusive interview with No.1 Citizen during women parliamentary caucus workshop of the permanent constitutional making process on gender perspective.
“Those cultures cause problems, if you want hundred cow to be paid for your daughter, who don’t have hundred cows, these youth don’t have those cows, where do you expects them to get the cow to pay your daughter and that is what promoting crimes in the country, that is why people are going for cattle rustling to get cow to be able to get marriage and that is a crime in itself” Beatrice explained.
She said those cultures demanding high dowries must be abolished, saying marriage should be based on acceptance because it is a union of families adding that marriage shouldn’t be commercialized to make it look like a commercial venture.
“It is a union of families, it is bringing people together that can make society hormonal, and it shouldn’t be based on commercial aspects” Beatrice asserted.
“I don’t agree on that principle of making youth remain bachelors, making ladies remain sponsor without getting marriage because of the bride prices that are involves,” Beatrice Aber said.
“The culture of South Sudan varied from community to community, and what is very important is to sensitizing these community of what is negative in their culture, in my own culture, there is no set benchmark, that is what make marriage in my community simple because we are considered a union of a family, it is bringing community together, it is bringing society together to live in harmony” she reiterated.
The female legislator underscored that women are aware of their right; the most important thing in the permanent constitutional making process on the gender perspectives is for the women to have the representation and equality.
“We need to be adequately represented and need to participate in equal number as citizen of this country because the issues that affect the women are paramount, the issue affecting women are even more. The issues affecting women also affect the society, so the involvement of women and their participation is very key so that every section of the population is well represented and taken care off,” Beatrice emphasized.